Ashes to ashes

Today he comes home. Strange that it feels like that. That my Viking is coming home. This morning the girls went to school and I said, "Daddy's coming home this afternoon". Floor immediately said, "Huh? Oh mum, that scared me a bit, but it is true, you are going to pick up dad's ashes today. So nice to have him back home with us". I immediately realised that was a pretty crazy thing to just blurt out. And yet it happened. Because that's how it feels. "Bye mum, see you this afternoon! We are going to start the Evening Marches tonight. Looking forward to it!".


How nice that is. My daughters are doing a fantastic job. They talk about Alwin every day. With memories and everything that comes up that he had a saying about or something silly to say. Whatever was in his head came out through us. In fact, we were the mouthpiece of his thoughts. I realise that more and more now. That's how it works. He had a certain way of thinking and because all three of us have an open mind, we could read it or experience it. Without realising it ourselves.


During his last round of chemotherapy, he received many sweet cards from his friends. They were all on the wardrobe next to his bed. Once he said: "Mary, as sweet as it is, I want to get rid of all these cards. All these stimuli are driving me crazy and I have bought something I want instead. Something I like to look at and that gives me peace". I asked him what he had bought. "The head of Eddie". Eddie is the Iron Maiden mascot. His favourite band since he was very young. He has everything from them. "I asked Anna which of the two she preferred and this one was it." I looked at his phone and saw the picture of Eddie. "Well done, darling, you bought yourself a nice thing," I said as I started to take the cards off the cabinet.


He didn't get to enjoy them for very long as this was a few weeks before he died. As I was sitting on the couch, with him lying on the bed in our living room, washed and shaved and still as handsome as ever, something suddenly occurred to me. I said to my parents-in-law and my daughters, "I know where Dad's ashes should go. He had it all worked out, but he didn't say it because he knew I'd find out. The ashes will go in Eddie's head. That's what he wanted it for". I immediately got an enthusiastic response from my daughters. "Yes Mum!!! That's the perfect spot!!!". And so it goes.


My Viking returns home. And Eddie's head? That finally gets some very valuable content.


Ashes to ashes, funk to funky
We know Major Tom's a junkie
Strung out in heaven's high
Hitting an all-time low

Lyrics by David Bowie (and other Alwin all-time favourites).